Rangers first lose Stepan, later Fast and then the game in Nashville (NSH 3 v. NYR 2)

Carl Hagelin and the Rangers fell short in Nashville (AP/Mark Humphrey)

Carl Hagelin and the Rangers fell short in Nashville (AP/Mark Humphrey)

Derek Stepan was feeling a bit under the weather and didn’t go in today’s tilt versus the Predators. Down their #1 goaltender and now their #1 center the Rangers valiantly marched on and grabbed a 1-0 lead on the strength of Rick Nash’s PP goal.

PREDATORS 3 vs. RANGERS 2

NYR at NSH 2.7.14 (ESPN)

NYR at NSH 2.7.14 (ESPN)

Things were looking good for Cam Talbot and the Rangers until the fading minutes of the 1st period. Two bombastic goals beat Talbot due to some careless puck play to close out the opening frame.

First it was Roman Josi who blasted a loose puck past Talbot, followed by and absolute howitzer from Shea Weber. In less than a minute the Rangers were down on the road. According to Rangers’ coach Alain Vigneault, “a couple of those goals the puck had eyes and just found the holes.”

Things got worse from there as promising young forward Jesper Fast injured his leg and left in the second period. Fast did not return and Vigneault told the media that it was a sprain with more info expected in the next few days.

Ryan McDonagh would score early in the third period but it was another seeing eye shot that found it’s way though a maze of players and Cam Talbot. Mike Ribiero would blast it past Girardi and off Talbot’s pad for the eventual game winner. NY would mount a surge late but to no avail. The Predators held on to a 3-2 win in their building forcing the Rangers to evaluate their game and elevate it tomorrow versus Dallas.

“We spent a lot of time in their end. We had some real good looks…and we’ll get back at it tomorrow night,” Vigneault said. Tomorrow night is against a high flying team in Dallas, without checking forward Jesper Fast. Derek Stepan is expected to play and for their sake, he better.

The Rangers need to load up Derek Stepan with vitamin C all the way home. Does anyone know if orange juice can be administered through an IV drip?

NOTES

HIGHLIGHTS & INTERVIEWS

Anthony Scultore has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL since 2014. His work also appears at... More about Anthony Scultore

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